PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota’s commercial code regarding cryptocurrency won’t change for at least another year.
The South Dakota House of Representatives refused to override Governor Kristi Noem’s veto on Monday and let HB-1193 die as a result.
State lawmakers didn’t override any of the five vetoes the Republican governor issued this year. Monday marked the final day of the 2023 legislative session.
Noem’s office issued a statement afterward. “I VETOED these bills because they put the people of South Dakota at risk,” she said. “I am glad that the legislators agreed that the pieces of legislation are unfit for our state and have sustained all five of my VETOES.”
The 13 vetoes that Noem issued so far during her five regular sessions as governor have been upheld.
Lawmakers have also agreed to all but one of the style-and-form vetoes from her. That was a bill on fairness in women’s sports. Noem came back with a bill of her own in 2022 on the same topic that passed.
Republican Rep. Mike Stevens was the only lawmaker who stood Monday to argue for an override on 1193. He said it had been a decade since South Dakota last adopted changes to the uniform commercial code that first became state law in the mid-1960s.
“I think it’s a good bill. I think it’s a bill that’s been misinterpreted. It’s a bill that takes into account the technology that’s going on,” Stevens said. “And it’s alright to be cautious, but I think we went beyond being cautious at this point.”
Republican Rep. Julie Auch and Republican Rep. Scott Odenbach called for the veto to be sustained.
“Upholding this veto will allow us to take a year (and) research these amendments,” Auch said. “I know we have been bombarded with emails, asked to listen to Zoom meetings, have learned more about the medium of exchange, Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and CBDCs than you could have ever imagined. I often thought over the last two weeks, it would have been nice to have this education before the amendments were presented.”
She continued, “One thing is for sure — this is not a simple cleanup bill — a hundred and seventeen pages of amendments to uniformly adopt state law that governs private commercial transactions, not to mention changing the definition of money.”
A two-thirds majority of 47 was needed in the House to pass the law notwithstanding the veto. The vote Monday was 30-37. Originally the House had passed it 49-17.
Twenty representatives switched from yes on the bill to no on the override Monday: Republicans Rocky Blare, Byron Callies, Gary Cammack, Kirk Chaffee, Fred Deutsch, Joe Donnell, Mary Fitzgerald, Kevin Jensen, Chris Kassin, Dennis Krull, Trish Ladner, John Mills, Scott Moore, Jess Olson, Ernie Otten, Carl Perry, Neal Pinnow, William Shorma, Kenneth Teunissen, and Democrat Eric Emery.
Seeking the bill’s passage were the South Dakota Bankers Association and several other banking, business and industry groups. SDBA president Karl Adam wrote a blog post and issued a news release calling for the veto to be overturned.
But a bloc of lawmakers calling themselves the South Dakota Freedom Caucus led the push to stop it. The group’s executive director, Jordan Mason, watched the debate from the House gallery. They issued several statements calling for the veto and urging that it be sustained.